Great Throughts Treasury

This site is dedicated to the memory of Dr. Alan William Smolowe who gave birth to the creation of this database.

Stephanie Mills

American Author, Lecturer and Bioregionalist

"Lifestyle and livelihood are pivotal moral issues."

"A source of bad conscience, however, is the knowledge that my way of life, austere though it may appear to the richer folk, is still ruinously exploitive of nature -- not in my backyard, where I practice harmlessness toward even the wasps, but in the atmosphere, where my fossil fuel combustion's carbon dioxide is helping change the climate; in all those mountainous places where the metals and minerals that structure and drive my American life are torn from the earth; and in the flesh of fish and birds, mammals, and reptiles, where the chemicals that made the paper and plastic I use bioaccumulate, deforming reproduction. That guilty knowledge is another argument for material simplicity. The less I consume, the less harm I do to that which I love. In a consumer society, harmless living may be simple, but it is not easy. I make no claim to exemplary harmlessness or simplicity. "

"I hope they can bring more awareness. I think there's probably a lot more people out there who have it and don't know it."

"Environmentalists have long been fond of saying that the sun is the only safe nuclear reactor, situated as it is some ninety-three million miles away."

"I think that simplicity is a likely venue for capital T. Truth. I'm inclined to believe that Truth lies closer to the bone. Yet the greater Truth of this planet is complexity. Neither Simplification nor Complication serve Truth and Beauty well. I think of simplicity as akin to Essence. What's the simplest, frugalest, gracefulest means to a given purpose."

"Ecological restoration, allied with the creation of ecosystem-scale wilderness reserves, represents the main hope that the organic quality of wildness may someday be resurrected in human souls and in all life-places on planet Earth."

"I'd like to think that the tenets of deep ecology are part of human consciousness by dint of the fact that we evolved, co-evolved with entire biotic communities. My hope would be that the philosophy of deep ecology, variously expressed or experienced, might strike resonant chords, or maybe send a thrill of recognition up and down one's spinal cord. The dominant culture is utterly antithetical to deep ecology, and planetary ecosystems are now so distorted, for the most part, that deep ecology's ground of being is threatened, and to think about the world in a deep ecological mode is threatening. Threatening, in a sense, to the thinker because the moral implications are deeply unsettling, and threatening to the anthropocentric world view."

"Place is a rich and complex reality and the more nature is apparent in place, the more distinct the influence."

"Restoration ecology is experimental science, a science of love and altruism. In its attempts to reverse the processes of ecosystem degradation it runs exactly counter to the market system, to land speculation, to the whole cultural attitude of regarding the Earth as commodity rather than community. It is a soft-souled science."

"The busier and thingier my life gets, the more my understanding - in the sense of compassion as well as that of knowledge - is diminished."

"The tenets of deep ecology are part of human consciousness by dint of the fact that we evolved, co-evolved with entire biotic communities."